High quality, timely information sharing between social care and the AA both before and after detention can deliver better outcomes. Appropriate adults who have access to information regarding a vulnerable person before they attend are better placed to provide them with support. Information provided by an appropriate adult after providing support can inform longer term care for the vulnerable person, reducing the risk of future contact with police.
For AAs based within local authorities (e.g. YOT staff and social workers), this is a relatively simple exercise. They will often have direct access to relatively large amounts of information on a vulnerable person.
Where providers are commissioned, information sharing can be more complex and requires more consideration. As public services increasingly work with commissioned partners, this challenge may not be unfamiliar to commissioing teams. There may be templates from other commissioned services which can be adopted. However, even with data-sharing agreements in place, there may be limits to what can be shared with external partners or practical challenges in making the process work effectively.
In selecting an approach, developers / commissioners should consider:
- what information is relevant
- where it is stored
- how it might accessed and updated.